Soul Seas

Soul Seas

A Poem by Arnoldo Garcia

The contradictions of how to face violence with peace.


My tenderness will absolve my rage
Or else I will have to eat my fingers
So that I can never carry a weapon
other than an ink pot
where I will dip the nubs of my blindness
to scribble your names...

I will not die on the border of nothingness
I was born to live in a sea of
abandoned bones and continents
forced drownings,
linchings and fatal crossings
A sea that fits in a wound the size of your smile,
carried on the back of the starry loneliness of our night

The muddy languages of
displaced grandmothers
disappeared fathers
mortal mothers
and indigenous grandfathers (who followed the lead of the women
into the fields and their horizons)
spoke our names
spit us into existence
kneading their saliva into the dust
with the longest caress,
in their howling breath,
to gestate our skins pockmarked with black moons

Here we are
even after so many defeats,
Planting in their shadows
Dreaming the same dreams over and over
Until the sea herself tells us to quit ploughing the land
to enter the realm of her feathered skin
She repeats:
It is you that has been defeated,
not the land,
not the ancestors,
not the prisoners,
not the martyrs,
not the women who have borne us,
not the migrants,
not the people whose labor feeds our souls.

Together we can lay in the sun or bury ourselves in the darkness
Together we can decide
Who shall be first and who shall be last
Who will keep us together from start to finish
Who shall be the ones to carry our sweat on their shoulders
and who shall serve the bread of our love

© 2014 Arnoldo Garcia

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Added on April 14, 2014
Last Updated on April 14, 2014
Tags: April poetry month, Chicano, Latino, literature, poetry, culture


Arnoldo Garcia
Arnoldo Garcia

Oakland--Matamoros-New York, CA

I write and scribble every morning over coffee, half- asleep, dreaming a different world or where all the other worlds come crashing in on the one that has me captive/captivated. I belong to many fami.. more..